One of the transitions that we are watching closely in the audio-visual Industry is the evolution of audio and video delivery over networks instead of through dedicated distribution systems. In the consumer world you may have noticed that some TV networks are starting to stream things like major sporting events from their websites, or you may have signed up for a service like Netflix or Hulu Plus to stream movies to your TV. These are examples of TV delivered over the Internet – commonly called IPTV.
We were recently working with a large school district to renovate a number of old school buildings and construct some new ones. One of our tasks was to make recommendations to the district for how to best deliver Cable TV to all of the schools. The current model they had been using was to run a traditional coax wiring system that would deliver Cable TV to each classroom. But there were problems with this approach:
- The TVs installed in most rooms were old, small, and didn’t function any more.
- As the coax wiring system aged it became less reliable and involved more maintenance.
- Without a dedicated cable box in each room (which would cost a significant amount of money) the digital channels could not be received leaving many of the desired educational channels inaccessible for teachers.
All of the classrooms in the project are receiving computers attached to projectors, so we recommended a video distribution solution that would take the cable feed from the Cable Company and stream it over the district’s network to the teacher’s computer in each classroom to be displayed via the projector. Since the network cabling and infrastructure was already in place no additional cabling was needed for any of the schools. In fact the whole system utilized existing infrastructure so that the only real cost to the district was purchasing the encoding equipment. The cost savings of utilizing this TV distribution over IP were quite significant while simultaneously providing a better quality signal with lower maintenance costs.
Whether you work in K-12, Higher Education, House of Worship, Business, Non-profit, or Government institution, you’re probably facing similar challenges. If you’re wrestling with how to best implement an audio and video signal distribution to a large number of locations, contact Acoustics By Design. We are unbiased audio-visual design experts who provide solutions that make sense and save cents.